Proline Apollo

ProLineAlternatives:

- Apollo 300/300 kit    £350
- Apollo 180/180 kit    £250

What's Included:
- 2 Apollo 300 Heads
- 2 Halogen 75W Bulbs
- 2 Soft Boxes 50 x 70cm
- 2 Sync Leads
- 2 Power Cords
- 2 Light Stands
- 1 110cm White Umbrella
- 1 80cm Gold/Silver Reflector
- 1 Barn Door Set
- 1 Honeycomb & Gel Set
- 1 Snoot & Honeycomb
- 1 Lamp Reflector
- 1 Wireless Radio Trigger
- 1 Equipment Case

We Tested: Apollo 300/300 creative kit
Price:  £470
From: www.prolinestudio.co.uk

ProLineThe Proline flash heads are by far the smallest and most portable here, but also the most basic. In addition to the usual twin head kit options the Creative Kit includes pretty much every conceivable accessory that an amateur could want for a home studio, all in a sleek case. To add all these accessories to the other kits on test here would add several hundred pounds to their cost.

In Use
The black, rubberised heads are appealingly small but the build quality isn't up to the standard of the others. The tilt joint is jerky and the plastic stand bracket cracked when we over-tightened the locking screw. The accessories are small and the snoot is plastic but all do what they're supposed to. They attach to the head via a clamp system, like a watch bracelet. The kit comes with a wireless radio trigger but we couldn't get it to work.

At a claimed 300W/s, the Apollo X300 head should be 50% more powerful than the 200W/s heads in this test, but in practice were about the same, and shot-to-shot output was not very consistent. Recycle times are the slowest too, taking about two to three seconds to recharge, and the modelling light is not proportional, only on or off.

Verdict
The Proline Apollo X300 Creative Kit is ideal for hobbyists wanting to experiment with creative lighting and seeking a complete solution in a box.  It's especially suited to occasional still-life work, where all the accessories come into their own, and the slow recycle times are not an issue. Travelling photographers looking for the lightest possible studio flash kit should also look at the basic 300/300 kit. Otherwise, for more demanding uses such as portraiture, there are better options.

Our score: 82%

Proline